Excessive dampness can damage a home's walls, floors, carpets and even plumbing. It is especially prevalent in basements, basement apartments and storage areas.
A dehumidifier takes excessive moisture out of the air by blowing humid air over cold evaporator coils in a refrigerator system.
Quality is closely related to the amount of moisture a unit extracts during a 24-hour period. A high-capacity unit can remove up to 3-6 pints of moisture during 24 hours. Some larger units can remove up to 50-60 pints per day. Small units (25 pints per day) may not be able to dry the air satisfactorily all the time.
Moisture is normally collected in a pan, and the unit will automatically shut off when the pan is full to prevent an overflow.
Attaching a garden hose or bucket makes pan emptying easier on some models. If used in a basement, the unit may be drained directly into the floor drain.
A humidistat for turning the dehumidifier off or on in response to changes in moisture content of the air is necessary for efficient energy consumption.
A dehumidifier is no substitute for an air conditioner. Although both dehumidify, a dehumidifier tends to raise the temperature.
For best results, a dehumidifier should be operated with doors and windows closed and should be placed away from walls, furniture and other air flow obstructions.